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emerald - goldfish jewellery design studio

You have all heard of Emeralds. This simply sparkling-green precious stone is sometimes even more valued than diamonds. It truly gives its owner the gift of eloquence.

The name comes from the Greek word Smaragdos, which means “green stone”. Many ancient races thought of the Emerald as the stone of the Gods. The Greeks associated this stone with the goddess Venus, and for many people it is a symbol of constancy and true affection reflecting the security of love. Legend has it that if an Emerald is given to a lover the stone will pale and grow dull as the love fades (don’t go into a panic, your stone might just be dirty!).

In the book of Revelations, Emerald is said to compose the throne of God. The Holy Grail is speculated to be carved from a huge Emerald… which fell from Satan’s crown when he was banished from heaven. And somewhere someone suggested that Jesus used an Emerald bowl at the last supper.

The first Emeralds came from the Egyptian desert. Not surprising then that Cleopatra made gifts of them to give her favourite ambassadors.

The Incas and Aztecs worshiped it as a sacred stone. Julius Caesar collected them for their healing properties, which are vast. Nero, while watching the gladiators in the arena, used it to lengthen his vision.

Emerald is the zodiac stone for Cancer and birthstone for May.

An excellent general healer. It acts as a blood detoxifier and encourage abundance, growth, peace, harmony, love and fidelity. It also lifts depression and helps those in need of inspiration. Emerald is said to give inner clarity and wisdom, and has been used for healing asthma, heart problems, indigestion, jaundice and poor eyesight.

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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According to the Greeks the Amethyst was formed when Bacchus, the ancient god of wine, was insulted by a mere mortal. For revenge he vowed to have a tiger eat the next mortal he came across, however, it happened to be a beautiful young lady named Amethyst. She cried out to the goddess Diana to save her and turned into a brilliant white crystal.

When Bacchus saw what he had done he felt really bad, so he poured wine all over her. This didn’t turn her back but rather turned the crystal a violet colour. He didn’t colour her feet or head though and this is why the Amethyst is usually unevenly coloured and tends to have pale ends.

This lovely gem varies in colour from a deep violet (the most sought after) to a pale Lavender (just as stunning), and has been used by the Chinese for about 8000 years. It is possibly the most popular semi-precious gem not only for jewellery, but also for healing purposes. It provides peace of mind and understanding when a loved one is lost, and relieves stress, grief and depression.

The Amethyst derives its name from the Greek word “Amethustos” which means “not drunken”. Apparently wearing this stone or drinking from an Amethyst cup prevents you from getting drunk (I haven’t tried that one yet, but I get drunk just staring into any beautiful Gem).

It is the stone of Bishops, so all bishops of the Catholic church wear an amethyst ring to symbolise their moral victory over all worldly indulgence. Sacred to Buddha as well, prayer beads are often fashioned from Amethyst. It is also symbolic of royalty and features quite prominently in the British Crown Jewels.

Amethyst is the February birthstone.

The Amethyst is also recommended for men when they wish to attract attention from the fairer sex. Promoting pleasant dreams, providing immunity to poison, improving memory, providing security and peace of mind  and freeing ones self from those addictive personalities (oneself or others) are just a few of the many uses of our featured gem.  Give it a try, or you may never know.

— Zak

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Rhodolite Garnet with a total of 0,22ct Diamonds and eight little Rubies set in 9ct White Gold. Made by Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio.

The gemstone for the month of January, the Garnet has a long and interesting history dating back to 3000BC.

This popular and affordable gem is found all over the world in all colours from red (Pyrope) and green (Tzavorite), to pink (Rhodolite), yellow (Andradite), and everything in between. The colour blue was absent until blue pyrope–spessartine garnets were discovered in 1990 in Madagascar. It changes colour from blue-green to purple depending on the colour temperature of viewing light.

Due to its color-changing quality, this kind of garnet resembles Alexandrite – which should be noted, is a totally different mineral. Though it has been found in a few other places as well, it is still very rare and highly expensive.

History & Legends

The name is believed to have been derived from the Greek word “granatum”, meaning “pomegranate seed”.

Some Asiatic tribes used red garnets as bullets for sling bows because they pierced the victims quickly, and could not be seen well in the body when they mingled with the blood.

There is some speculation whether garnets were buried with dead in order to offer protection during the death experience or offering of payment for safe passage to the underworld. Garnets are also used for protection during any other travel.

Garnet jewellery has been found that date back as far as the Bronze Age (3500 to 1200 BC).

During the 13th Century, the gemstone was commonly worn to repel insects, evil spirits and ward off the evil eye.

In the Koran, the garnet illuminates the fourth heaven of Islam.

Legend has it that Noah kept a garnet on the bow of his ark to help him navigate at night.

Garnets have been valued as a sacred stone by South and North American Indians, Aztecs, African tribes and the Mayans.

The use of red garnet was used by Egyptian pharaohs for both decorative and ceremonial purposes. On statues of the Egyptian nature goddess Isis, garnets are often found on her ceremonial belt to represent her blood and power.

Ancient Romans also wore garnet rings and traded garnet gemstones.

Garnet is a power stone that has long been associated with passion, love and sensuality. This is also a good stone to help you through emotional trauma; set in silver it has a wonderfully soothing effect.

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Tanzanite Ring - Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio

This beautiful blue-purple stone has a short but rich history.

Tanzanite was first discovered in 1967 in the Merelani Hills of Mount Kilimanjaro by Massai cattle herders. After a fire caused by lighting, they noticed that brown Zoisite crystals turned a deep blue-purple colour. When the New York jeweller, Louis Tiffany, was presented with the first stones, he recommended the name be changed from blue Zoisite to Tanzanite. He thought the word Zoisite reminded too much of the word “suicide”!  Soon Tanzanite was up there with the other most desirable stones like Sapphire, Emerald and Ruby.

Tanzanite looks its best set in white metal and is complimented wonderfully by diamonds. Be sure to buy your Tanzanite certified, and from a respectable dealer as there are many fraudsters out there.

As this stone is only found in one place in the world,  and also not in big quantities, it is now said that it is 1000 times rarer than the Diamond!This makes Tanzanite very sought after.

Not without a price as the success of the stone brought it some media controversy. It was alleged that the profits of Tanzanite sales funded Osama Bin Laden’s terrorist group, Al Queda, but this was as unfounded as the alleged weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

Tanzanite has been called the “Stone of Magic” as it is said to facilitate spiritual awareness and stimulate insight. It also opens the Third Eye, and is known to relieve depression and turn negative energy into positive.

Tanzanite has been added to the official birthstone list as the birthstone for December, and is the suggested gemstone for the 24th wedding anniversary.

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio carry a large selection of top quality certified tanzanites in a range of cuts and sizes, and are able to supply you with the perfect stone to suit not only your every desire, but your budget aswell. For further information, please contact us.

9ct White Gold Diamond Tanzanite Halo Ring

9ct Rose Gold Large Protea Tanzanite Ring

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This sunny, happy stone is a member of the quarts family, and is basically the yellow to orange-brown variant that grows in conjunction with Amethyst.

Natural Citrine is actually rare; most gems on the market are Amethyst (purple) that has been heat-treated to turn yellow.

citrine and gold ring - goldfish jewellery design studio
“Celtic Love”. Citrine set in 9ct Gold Ring. Made by Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio

Citrine got its name from the French word for lemon: “citron”.

In Ancient times this gem was carried to ward of evil thoughts and snake bites. It is also said that if you place it in your moneybox it will attract more business, hence its nickname, ‘Merchant Stone’.

Citrine is one of the few stones that dispel negative energy, so it never needs to be energetically cleaned. In fact, this stone is excellent for alleviating depression and for brightening up those dark corners of ones self. It helps the wearer to laugh and frees the mind from negative thought.

On the physical side it is used in the treatment of thyroid, kidney and liver problems. It also aids in matters of digestion and blood circulation.

Citrine is one of the November birthstones and is well known for its calming energies. The stone also represents strength and hope, peace, prosperity, loyalty, healing and creativity.

— Reinette


Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Symbolizing wealth, joy, love and power, the Ruby has always been cherished and desired by people throughout the world.

They are offered to Buddha in China, Krishna in India, and are closely associated with dragons in western mythology. Ancient Hindus called the stone the “King of Gems” and believed it radiated a warmth and luminosity from an internal flame.  This was linked to passion and love that emanates from the heart, making this stone a perfect gift for  lovers.

Along with Padparadscha, Ruby is a colour of Sapphire with it’s own name. Second only to the Diamond in hardness, the Ruby is ideal for the use in jewellery.

The most valuable Rubies originate from Burma, however, they are also found in Thailand, Australia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Vietnam, India, Russia, Norway and America. Synthetic rubies were first made in 1902 by a Frenchman, Auguste Verneuil, using powdered aluminium oxide and a blowtorch.

ruby - goldfish jewellery design studio
STRAWBERRIES AND CREAM“. Rhodolite Garnet central stone with a total of 0,22ct Diamonds and eight little Rubies on the shoulders, set in 9ct White Gold. Made by Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio.

The Ruby has found a special place in our hearts and legends.

The Burmese believed it could only be found in bottomless valleys. They would toss meat into the valleys in the hope that some of the Rubies would stick to the meat and be eaten by vultures; they could then retrieve the gems by killing the vultures.

The most common beliefs are obviously those associated with love. The Ruby is meant to help us in all manners of love; this is possibly due to the bright red colour which is due to the chromium and iron content. The Ruby is also supposedly meant to stimulate sexual desires and energies.

One of the most interesting myths associated with Ruby is that when the wearer is in danger or about to become ill, the stone would become darker.

It is an amplifier of energy, both positive and negative, and can help the circulatory system, stimulate motivation and visualisation, as well as dealing with listlessness.

Some believed it to be a stone of protection, and was worn when going into battle.

Bestowing knowledge, health and wealth are also on the long list of uses for the ruby, and it is often found carved with dragons and snakes to promote the flow of money and power to the owner.

When a man wears a Ruby it is said to signify manhood, nobility and valour.

To dream of rubies is a sign that success is on the way.

This gem is also meant to chase away spirits and evil phantoms that are hanging around.

Ruby is the July birthstone and represents contentment, peace, harmony and integrity.

— Zak


Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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A variety of Beryl, this blue to sea-green stone’s name actually means ‘sea water’ in Latin. In the 19th century the sea- green variety was the most popular, however, today the blue colour is the most sought after Aquamarine.

Aquamarine is often confused with Topaz, but Aquamarine usually has a softer blue and lack any traces of grey. The element responsible for the stone`s lovely colour is Iron. Even though it can be found on every continent, the deposits in Brazil are the most important. Sadly some major deposits in Russia have already been mined out.

Also called the ‘Sailors Gem’, it was thought to bring courage and calmness; and was valued as a protective stone. Medieval belief was that Aquamarine would reawaken the passions of married couples.

In the Bible it is written that Aquamarine was used in the foundations of the ‘Heavenly City’. In Exodus, the high priest wore one on each shoulder.

This gem is believed to help with motion sickness, to help sooth the nerves, and aids in the healing process after trauma.

Aquamarine is the March birthstone associated with courage, loyalty and friendship; and symbolizes honesty, faithfulness and beauty.

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Opal Pendant - Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio

“With the fire of carbuncle, the brilliant purple of amethyst and the sea green colour of the emerald, all shining together in incredible union”;  these are the words used by Pliny the Elder (23-79AD) in the world’s first Encyclopaedia, and possibly the best description of this beautiful gem stone.

In ancient times this precious gem was only found in Czechoslovakia, until the Spaniards returned from South America with fine specimens of Aztec Opals.

The Opal went through a stage in its history when it was believed to carry bad luck; this was due to Sir Walter Scott’s “Anne of Geierstein”, in which the heroine possesses an Opal that changes colour according to her emotions and crumbled upon her death.

A rich and intricate history, for a rich and intricate stone, the stone`s intriguing play of light and colour is due to the moisture content of the stone – which when lost, the stone loses its fire. This fact and the fascinating play of colour and light have woven numerous legends and myths into the Opal`s history.

The Greeks believed it to bestow powers of fore sight and prophecy. The Arabs believe the stone fell from the heavens in flashes of lightning. Cherished by thieves who would wrap the gem in a bay leaf to become invisible, and worn by blondes to keep the colour of their hair, the Opal really has a colourful and vibrant history.

The name Opal is derived from the Sanskrit word upala (Precious stone), the Greek word opallios (to see a colour), and the Latin word opalus (to see a change of colour).

Opal artifacts have been recovered from caves in Kenya, dating back 6000 years. Now days 95% of the opals mined come from Australia which has become synonymous with the Opal, and adopted it as one of its national symbols.

People born in October must surely be blessed to have the Opal as their birthstone.

— Zak


Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Pearls: The Tears of the Gods

Pearls are the essence of hope, faith, and the ability to make the best of the situation you are in.

It is an organic gem that is formed when an irritant (usually a grain of sand) enters a mollusc (shellfish). The oyster or mollusc coats the irritant with layers of nacre, also known as mother of pearl, until the irritant is turned into a beautiful pearl! Light reflecting from these overlapping layers of nacre creates a characteristic iridescent lustre which is also known as the “orient of the pearl”.

For thousands of years natural pearls have been harvested from the Red Sea, Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Manaar. Once believed to be the tears of the Gods, the pearl is also referred to as the “Queen Gem” (diamond being the “King Gem”). The Ancient Hindus included it as one of the five sacred gems on the magical necklace of Vishnu.

In the case of Cultured Pearls, the irritant is introduced to initiate the formation of the pearl – this is the case with most pearls on the market today as it is much more cost effective to cultivate them than it is to search the seas for oysters bearing Pearls. Freshwater Pearls occur in the rivers of Scotland, Ireland, Austria, France, Germany and Mississippi. Both Freshwater and Saltwater Pearls are cultivated in Japan.

The pearl is one of the June birthstones, and gemstone of the 3rd and 30th anniversary.

It is said that the Pearl enable us to accept love.

There is also a great myth that says Pearls are unlucky, but it simply cannot be said of the lucky grain of sand that started out as an annoyance and ended up being a beautiful gem!

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you the rarest gem of all: Alexandrite. Rarer than Sapphire, Ruby, Emerald, Diamond and Tanzanite, it is extremely difficult to come by. And even if you do manage to track one down, you will pay through your nose!

What sets this beauty apart is its colour changing abilities, it has been referred to as ‘an Emerald by day and a Ruby by night’.  Alexandrite is a Chrysoberyl which contains not only titanium and iron, but also chrome, which accounts for the spectacular colour change. The stone goes from green in daylight to purplish-red in artificial light. This does vary depending on where it was mined, but the most sought after stones are from Russian descent.

Alexandrite was discovered in 1830 in the Emerald mines in the southern part of Russia’s Ural Mountains. It was named after Czar Alexander II, as it was discovered on his birthday, and was highly prised by Russian aristocrats and royalty as it displayed their national military colours, green and red. At first it was exclusive to the Russian ‘richest’ as it was the only source for more than 90 years, however, small deposits were found on the island of Sri Lanka but the quality wasn’t nearly as good as the Russian stones.

In the mid-1980’s a relatively large strike of Alexandrite was made in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais at Hematita. Chaos ensued… when the news leaked out, 3000 ‘garimpeiros’ (independent prospectors) descended on the small valley and began digging. This valley is only 500 feet wide and 650 feet long! It is understandable that the government gave the order to shut down after only 12 weeks, with an average of one death by gunshot per week.

By then the area was basically mined out. It is estimated that the total (cut) weight mined there, was only 150 000 carats, sound like a lot? Not next to the 100 million carats of diamonds mined every year…

Since then mining has resumed in Hematita, but very sporadic. Limited amounts have been coming out of Russia since the fall of the Soviet system, but these stones generally have owners even before they are mined.

Alexandrite is the birthstone for June, along with Pearl and Moonstone.

If you are indeed the lucky owner of such a gem, it is said to give clarity of thought in difficult situations and will support creativity and inspire imagination. Just the kind of stone I would like to possess!

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

Image credit: By Original uploader was User: at en.wikipedia – Photographed by David Weinberg for and released to the public domain. contributors. Step Cut Alexandrite Cushion, 26.75 cts. In, Tsarstone collectors guide. December 07, 2006, 16:42 UTC. Available at: Accessed February 26, 2007., CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

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Bloodstone is a dark green stone with red flecks. It is a form of silica quarts, also known as green Chalcedony. Chalcedony is actually a group of tiny quartz crystals that grow in masses/lumps. Plasma and Heliotrope are the two variations; Plasma is very deep opaque green with little or no red flecks and may even have yellowish spots. Heliotrope is a slightly translucent, lighter green and has red in it.

As with many gemstones, Bloodstone was treasured by the ancients. The Christian religion had a close connection with this gem as it was said to represent the blood of Christ. The legend of Bloodstone says that it formed when a drop of Christ’s blood fell on some Jasper at the foot of the cross. A traditional amulet would have the head of Christ positioned on Bloodstone in such a way that the red flecks look like blood.

During the middle-ages, Bloodstone was believed to have healing powers; the stone was crushed and mixed with egg whites and honey to cure tumours and to stop bleeding. Alchemists used it to cure blood poisoning or to draw out poison from snakebites. A Franciscan Friar gave the Mexican Indians pieces of Bloodstone during the 1576 plague to stop their haemorrhaging.

On a metaphysical level, Bloodstone is said to heal all blood ailments. It also symbolises the connection between the red lifeblood of animals and the green plant world. For meditation, this gem is excellent as it helps to align chakras and smoothes energy flow.

Bloodstone is the birthstone for March.

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.

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Zodiac Stones and Birthstones

Zodiac Stones and Birthstones - Gem stones

We are often asked about zodiac stones and birthstones, so I thought it appropriate to list them for you. However, do keep in mind that there are variations on these; through the ages many different cultures developed their own associations with different gems.  These are the most commonly accepted:

Zodiac Stones

Star Sign Date Gem
Aquarius 20 January – 18 February Garnet
Pisces 19 February – 20 March Amethyst
Aries 21 March – 19 April Blood stone
Taurus 20 April – 20 May Sapphire
Gemini 21 May – 21 June Agate
Cancer 22 June – 22 July Emerald
Leo 23 July – 22 August  Onyx
Virgo 23 August – 22 September  Carnelian
Libra 23 September – 23 October  Peridot
Scorpio 24 October – 21 November  Beryl
Sagittarius 22 November – 21 December Topaz
Capricorn 22 December – 19 January Ruby

Birthstones and Meanings

Month Gem Meaning
January Garnet Constancy
February Amethyst Sincerity
March Blood stone or Aquamarine Courage
April Diamond Innocence
May Emerald Love, Success
June Pearl, moonstone, Alexandrite Compassion
July Ruby Contentment
August Sardonyx or Peridot Married Happiness
September Sapphire Clear Thinking
October Opal or tourmaline Hope
November Citrine, Topaz Fidelity
December Turquoise, Lapis Lazuli or Tanzanite Prosperity

— Reinette

Goldfish Jewellery Design Studio works with all precious metals, stones and diamonds. For further information, please contact us.